Southeast Alaska’s largest order of mammal, the Rodentia, includes three large species and many smaller ones. In order of size, they are: beaver, porcupine and hoary marmot. As we wrote in The Nature of Southeast Alaska (Carstensen, Armstrong & O’Clair, 3rd ed, 2013)

‘Sedentary habits, combined with formidable appetites, means that our three large rodents leave unmistakable imprints on their environment. Marmots ‘farm’ the subalpine meadows, as if tethered like horses to their burrow entries, clipping, plowing, trampling, and fertilizing. Porcupines are the dominant herbivores in many Juneau forests, grazing and browsing herbs and shrubs in summer, but targeting the trees themselves in winter, occasionally killing hemlocks by girdling. And beavers are creators and modifiers of wetlands, factors as significant to the pageant of succession as landslides or wave erosion.’

The order Rodentia has the largest number of Southeast species. The order Rodentia has the largest number of Southeast species.

So far, Nature>Critters>Mammals>Rodents has 3 category pages:



Hoary marmot

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